"He always has the last word"


Archie's Tribute 


Former Derby and Forest dynamo Archie Gemmill has revealed the agony of being left out of Clough's team which won the European Cup in 1979. He says the decision led to his departure from the City Ground the following season.

Gemmill says he often sees the Master Manager because he lives nearby. "We reminisce about the old times and the subject always comes up - about leaving me out of the European Cup Final."

Speaking on Brian Tansley's Matchday Programme on BBC Radio Nottingham (2000), Gemmill said he had been "more than upset" by the decision to leave him on the bench for the match against Malmo. Even these days, Gemmill has strong feelings about the decision.

"I still think he was most certainly in the wrong. But he keeps saying to me, 'what was the score?'

"He always has the last word," Gemmill added with a laugh.

The former midfielder said he had been injured in the semi-final, but had been promised by Clough and his assistant Peter Taylor that he would be in the final if he proved his fitness.

"As far as I was concerned, I had proved my fitness, but I was left out. I made my feelings known to both of them. It was most certainly a falling out. I was transferred to Birmingham the following season."

Gemmill says that he was asked to return to Forest soon afterwards, but he decided against it.

"I said too many things had been said between the three of us. If you speak to Mr Clough he will say it was one of his worst decisions to let me go."

During a fascinating interview, Gemmill also spoke of the sadness surrounding the split between Brian Clough and Peter Taylor.

"They had been together for an awful long time and had wonderful success. It was a partnership. Pete put in a lot, it wasn't a one-man show. I think Mr Clough would tell you that as well. Pete was important to the set-up.

"It was a great surprise when they did split-up. It was sad that people who had known each other for such a long time hadn't spoken prior to Pete passing on. In hindsight, I think the boss would have liked to have spoken to him."

Gemmill was signed by Clough and Taylor from Preston. The pair took him to Derby's Baseball Ground after snatching him from under the nose of Everton. The young Scot wanted to talk to the Goodison club and he tried to put the pair off. But they were determined to get his signature. Clough wouldn't leave until the deal was done.

"He (Clough) decided he was going to sleep outside in the car," continued Gemmill. "But my wife invited him in and he stayed the night. She cooked him breakfast in the morning....and I ended-up signing in the morning."

He said Clough and Taylor were highly persuasive. "If they got something between their teeth, they wouldn't let it go.

"They said it was the final piece in the jigsaw to win the championship. And that's what happened. We won the championship that year."

The former Scottish international said he had "wonderful times" working for Brian Clough. He praised his man-management.

"He used to tell people how well they were doing when they were going through a sticky time. And people who were doing particularly well, he used to knock them down a peg or two to keep things bubbling along.

"In my time I came in for a reasonable amount of criticism. But that got the best out of me because I thought to myself, 'I'll prove you wrong.'"